A short story inspired by a trip to Kingley Vale near Chichester, and the ancient yew forest there. I don’t normally do gruesome, but it’s not that that bad. The Donestre is a mythical monster from an old English writing called the Wonders of the East. I was fascinated by the grief it showed after it killed its prey. See also here.
Please read this story and other short stories when they become available right here.
I hope you enjoyed the story of The Donestre. Don’t have nightmares.
Kingley Vale – Location for The Donestre
The Kingly Vale nature reserve is definitely worth a visit if you are ever in the Chichester area. It is well signposted locally. You can find it off the road from Chichester to Funtington, the B2178 and B2146. You can park in West Stoke Car Park. There is an approximately half a mile walk from the car park, up gentle slope along a stoney path. Dogs are allowed but should be kept on a lead. My advice is not to leave valuables on show in your car as there have been some thefts over the last few years. This leads to the ancient Yew Forest and it is definitely worth the walk! The photos for this post were taken there.
If you follow the path up the hill you come to some ancient burial mounds on the very top and you get some amazing views: the Isle of Wight, Chichester Harbour. These barrows are called ‘Devil’s Humps or the ‘Kings’ Graves’. Legend has it that Viking Kings were buried there after a battle with the local Saxons. It is likely though that these date back to the Bronze Age. It is truly a ‘magical’ place – some of the Yew Trees could be thousands of years old!
During the second world war the area was used for training and we still find unexploded ordnance up there and Bomb Disposal team are called to deal with it.